domestic science

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home economics

home economics, study of homemaking and the relation of the home to the community. Formerly limited to problems of food (nutrition and cookery), clothing, sewing, textiles, household equipment, housecleaning, housing, hygiene, and household economics, it later came to include many aspects of family relations, parental education, consumer education, and institutional management. The application of scientific techniques to home economics was developed under the leadership of Ellen Henrietta Swallow Richards; later an emphasis was placed on the social, economic, and aesthetic aspects. Although called in some countries home science, household arts, domestic science, or domestic economy, the subject is known today in the United States as home economics, and specialized terms are used for its subdivisions. The field of home economics has, at different times, emphasized training in needlework, cookery, the management of servants, the preparation of medicines, and food preservation; such instruction was once given mainly in the home and from a practical rather than a scientific standpoint. In the United States the teaching of cooking and sewing in the public schools was coincident with manual training for boys, beginning in the 1880s. State institutions, notably in Iowa, Kansas, and Illinois, pioneered in introducing home economics courses on the college level in the 1870s. In 1914, the Smith-Lever Act made federal funds available for extension work in home economics and agriculture, in cooperation with the states; through this provision, supplemented by later acts, home demonstration work is carried on in many rural localities. The Smith-Hughes Act of 1917 instituted secondary school vocational education in home economics and other fields. Home economics, once taught only to women, is now taught to both men and women; in the United States home economics courses are taught mainly at the secondary school level, more commonly in rural than in urban areas. The International Federation of Home Economics, an organization devoted to the teaching of home economics on a worldwide basis, has members in over 60 countries.


See S. Schuler and E. M. Schuler, The Householders' Encyclopedia (1973); M. B. Tate, Home Economics As a Profession (2d ed. 1973).

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domestic science

the study of cooking, needlework, and other subjects concerned with household skills
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
By the way, they don't call it "domestic science" any more, it's called "home economics".
Despite the particularly diverse paths later taken by the Academy's Chinese students, women students of domestic science, their teachers, and homebound housewives are often identified first by their intellectual proximity to the home and distance from the loci of political power.
Most people have heard of Mrs Beeton but her Book of Household Management was not the only Victorian domestic science best seller.
A mother of four, grandmother of six and great grandmother of seven, Mrs Stephens was a domestic science teacher and pianist.
"In the US alone, the software sector has the highest ratio of offshore to domestic employees - almost 13 off-shored jobs per 100 domestic jobs - may be a reflection of a scarcity of domestic science and engineering graduates in the US."
software sector has the highest ratio of offshore to domestic employees--almost 13 offshore jobs per 100 domestic positions--may be a reflection of a scarcity of domestic science and engineering graduates in the U.S."
It offers various courses in communication skills, languages, management, art of self-presentation, domestic science, general culture, cuisine, protocol, art, child care, introduction to psychology and spiritual enrichment.
Marjorie graduated from Roxbury Memorial High School for Girls and the Boston School of Domestic Science. She then became a teacher of Elementary Sewing in the Boston Schools for 12 years.
Elias introduces her narrative with a nod to the Progressive origins of the movement, outlining some of the earlier manifestations of domestic advice and domestic science in the United States.
Before retirement last year, Mrs Perkins taught design technology, formerly known as home economics, domestic science and cookery, at Christ the King School, Southport.
Roberta came to Edmonton in 1911 where she became a teacher in domestic science. She enlisted in the Canadian Army Medical Corps in 1916 and went overseas as a dietitian.
Dynamite got an email at from her old domestic science teacher, Mrs Forbes, wishing her luck.